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Chris Speyer leaves REI to join MEC

Published July 10, 2024

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (BRAIN) — Industry veteran Chris Speyer, most recently Chief Merchandising Officer at REI Co-op, is joining the Canadian sports retailer Mountain Equipment Company. He will officially join MEC at the end of the month. 

Speyer has a history as an executive at Accell Group, Raleigh Bicycles, and World Wide Cycles. He is also the chair of the PeopleForBikes Coalition's board of directors.

"We are ecstatic to welcome Chris to our team at MEC," said MEC's CEO, Peter Hlynsky. "With his deep industry knowledge and longstanding vendor relationships, he brings expertise that is going to elevate our teams and support our next phase of growth. Chris leads with values and has a genuine passion for the outdoors, in total alignment with MEC's core principles. His remarkable track record of working with different brands and growing the private label business will be instrumental in maximizing the potential of MEC's own label brand and continuing to offer top tier assortments at best the price to members."

Speyer grew up in Ottawa where his mom encouraged his participation in the outdoors and his early industry career saw him selling skis and bikes and athletic footwear at a local store. 

"Joining MEC feels like coming home," he said. "I still remember flipping through the seasonal catalog, inspired by the amazing photos and gear. Beyond the thrill of returning to Canada, I'm drawn to how MEC stays true to its founding values. It's a beloved brand that prioritizes great people and great products, aligning perfectly with my values and leadership style. I'm beyond excited to be part of the team and help MEC continue to thrive and succeed!"

MEC was established in 1971 and operated as a consumer-owned co-op, like REI, until 2020 when it transitioned to private ownership


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